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see if we can make this happen. it f it happens, great, if it doesn't -- if it happens, great, if it doesn't, and inject a lot of different great ideas and finding an idea that's going to use that space. because one of the things that i always hear is what are we going to do with this? what are we going to do with this? it's time to do something. let's do the right thing and the best thing that we can do. thank you. commissioner buell: thank you. >> is there any additional public comment on this item? seeing none, public comment is closed. >> can we put the plan up on the screen for everybody to see? one of the questions i have is the -- it's interesting the french version, you see many of the courts along the roadside under trees, but they're on the main thoroughfare so i thought
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it was interesting on the thorough 0 fair and how the french play the game -- on the thoroughfare and how the french play the game. and at aquatic park, some of the nonplayers can sit and relax. and is that accounted for in this plan? >> well, there's an expensive seating wall basically all around or -- that would be the water side. so there aren't any benches in the plan. >> there's places to sit. >> oh, yeah. >> ok. commissioner lee. commissioner lee: thank you. yes, i know that there are -- there have been many ideas for activating this space. roller skating and so forth. and i know it's difficult when you're competing -- you're looking at limited space, with competing interests. but i do think this is a great project. and i want to thank local 261
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for stepping up and participating and helping us make this possible. now, i have a question, in terms of -- from the diagram, it looks like -- is there a fence around the area? commissioner buell: thanks, earnestine. we'll ask the staff. >> it's open space. commissioner lee: -- >> there's a seating wall so the balls will not roll. >> that's what the gray is. that's the perimeter around the green, is there -- >> around the green, there's like a granite curb. and then outside of that, there's a decomposed granite -- decomposed gravel area. >> and this -- there will be no charge for playing on this. >> no. >> and in terms of play, are you going to -- is there --
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players bring their own equipment or are you providing some -- >> that's what we anticipate, yes. there are potential other plans for ways to have a set of bachi balls on site. but currently, it will be people will bring their own equipment. >> and you don't anticipate having any staff or anything monitor -- >> no. >> or program out -- >> no. >> site. well, thank you. commissioner buell: commissioner sullivan. commissioner sullivan: i think this is an interesting idea. i've spent a lot of time in this area. both during the week and on the weekends. and i have never seen that space used for anything. i've never seen anyone, i'm sure there have been people in the past that have been there. but i've never observed it. so this is a really interesting idea for that space. i wanted to ask about the layout. so it looks like -- if you look at this, you see grass, and within a couple of long rectanglals, you see where you would have the crushed -- the surface on which you would play bachi. and in between, a pretty narrow
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area of grass and around the perimeter a narrow area of grass. there have been some prior projects that the department has implemented where we haven't really thought very carefully about where people are actually going to walk and we had this idea we were going to have this nice grass turf and what we discovered was that people trampled the turf and after a few months, it looked like a dust bowl. so i would just really encourage as you look at this space, and as you design it, to think about what people are actually going to walk when they use it. because it looks great now. but it might be -- it might make more sense to have another surface, if it's going to be an area that's going to get a lot of wear and tear and have surface in other areas rather than grass that turns into something else. thanks. commissioner buell: commissioner harrison. commissioner harrison: two things. and i think one of them was answered. you talked in the page here about having the bachi balls that the department would have to give out to people free.
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and i think ms. crowley talked about that. the rail museum would have this equipment and be able to give it out. have you talked to them about this? >> we're looking into that. that's one of the ideas. and i said at the beginning, we'll ask people to bring their own bachi balls. but we're looking into the idea of having one of the adjacent retail frontages have -- much like some other courts i've been to where you drop your driver's license in exchange nor getting the balls and you do the switch back at the end. but we don't have any agreement in place. commissioner harrison: the other agreement with my fellow commissioner sullivan, that there are these blocks that they make for walking on and driving on that you fill them with soil up to a certain point and then grass seeds in and they grow. and you can cut them like grass. but they don't get worn out. you aren't trampling on the soil itself. so that's a suggestion. >> we'll definitely look into that. commissioner harrison: thank you. commissioner buell:
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commissioner bonilla. commissioner bonilla: yes. i know there -- perhaps there have been competing ideas and interests in terms of how that space could be utilized. so what i want to hear from staff is what were some of the specific ideas that were brought up in terms of how that space could be used. and what were your -- in terms. pros and cons, or the weighting of these ideas, how did you arrive at -- that this would be the best and highest use for this -- for this parcel? could you give me a little bit more information on that? >> sure. i may actually partially defer the answer of that question to the next item on the agenda. which is acceptance of the gift. the gift has been very generously offered to us by the labor of local 261 community and training foundation. i believe i got that correct. and they presented us with the idea.
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so i can say that from the city's perspective. we think this is a wonderful -- it's very passive use. but it's very popular recreational activity. and we think it's a wonderful -- it's an urban sport that doesn't require a huge amount of infrastructure. and we think it's a wonderful match in terms of attracting people who can come and have some food and sit on these seating walls and play the sport. commissioner bonilla: what i want to know is were there actually in fact -- were there other ideas that were talked about, discussed, in detail in terms of what to do with this parcel? i mean, what were some of the other ideas that staff -- >> we were actually presented -- staff considered -- commissioner bonilla: i know. but in terms of public input, what ideas were there that were presented for the use of this space? other than the idea that came
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up in terms of having this gift for this specific purpose? >> there wasn't actually a ellis iing of public input -- a soliciting of public input for this. the answer to your question is we didn't actually have -- we've had discussions internally of what we would like to do with this space and how to activate it and when we we were presented with this gift we thought it was a wonderful match. so the answer to your question is we didn't have a long list. commissioner bonilla: i see. so we are jumping on this because there is a golden opportunity here to have some money to use that parcel. basically. but in reality, and i just want to put it on the table here, is that in reality, there wasn't really a discussion per se in terms of what were some of the
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competing interests or ideas for the use of this space, right? i just want to know that. commissioner buell: i think the answer is we didn't go through an r.f.q. for a space like this. and some supporters came forward and i think if you look in your binder, you'll see an extensive list of supporters who came forward with an idea to pay for this. and to install it. i think your question is a legitimate one about -- commissioner bonilla: and for commissioner buell, for factual purposes. and i wanted to know if there were any or ideas. commissioner buell: it sounds like no one has come forward unsolicited with a proposal and staff had never gotten to the solicitation stage. >> correct. commissioner buell: so we're presented with this as an opportunity. i had opted not to put the items together because the next item has to do with the funding and installation. but perhaps that would have put it in more of a context as we
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consider this item. i would even entertain listening to the next item before we vote on either one. i know margaret is looking at me like i'm violating every robert's rule of order. but i think it puts it somewhat in context. commissioner bonilla: i think so, too. commissioner buell: we'll move to the second item. you can call that item and then we'll go back to voting on both of them after we've heard it. >> thank you, commissioner buell. >> we're going to hear item number seven which is justin herman plaza gift. >> thank you, president buell, and the commission and all the staff at park and rec has been so much fun to work with over the last few months. if it's ok, margaret, can i have some verbual aids out? i'll give you some bachi balls to play with so you can see what we're talking about. so i am here on behalf of the laborors community and training
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association which i'm trustee. the lctf, a local nonprofit and union affiliated organization founded last year and our mission is to empower low income and underserved residents of san francisco through job training and placement. and this gift is the first class project for the nonprofit. i have a short power point that i'm going to go through that's on the second page. stewart, can you help me with this? who's been working on this? the local 261 community service and training foundation has not been alone. and although the gift is flowing through them it's been a whole bunch of folks who put this together. and i know the actual gift amount, we've listed is $61,000 which is for the hard costs. that's the materials, and the labor costs for the trainees. they do get paid for working on this project.
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everything else has been done pro bono. and if we had gone out and solicited bids to do this job, it would have been somewhere in the range of $200,000. so a lot of folks have put a lot of time and have been very generous. one of the great builders in town will oversee the project and provide all the equipment, and the tools, and the construction management. and a great local landscape architectural firm did the con isn'tual work with park and rec staff and the mayor's office to see what kinds of things would fit best in this space. and during that process there was a lot of discussion over other ideas. and they worked with the mayor's office of homelessness about the need to find something that will activate this space to encourage folks to come and ution the space for more than -- and use the space for more than just a place to sleep at night. boston properties, they currently maintain this parcel
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as part of their original agreement with the city and all costs of maintaining the site today and going forward will be covered by bost properties -- by boston properties. that's the resurfacing, when the old materials wear out, the crushed oyster shells, they will replenish it and dampen it and the playing surface, tamp it down on occasion, the replacing of the turf, all these things would be done by boston properties. i mentioned the mayor's office of economic and work force development who have been definitely helping to push the ball forward with lev and margaret and all the folks at rec and park and mark, kevin yarrow, another great architectural firm, did the detail drawings that we will be building off of. and i have not told this to anybody. you're the first to hear this. but marc benioff, the entire
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cost of $61,000 for the materials and the labor. so we are very excited that this project is 100% paid for. and ready to go. the next slide, how do we do this? we have been doing, i have been doing a lot of outreach and my office has been down there, first at the ferry building and now at one market for many, many years. and i have reached out to as many of my neighbors as possible. here's a short list of folks who support it. and we have gone to all the building owners from the ferry building, to one market, to the spear towers, to the hotel vitali, to the hyatt and bost properties have signed on and the san francisco sports council which is not only the great local organization who worked to do things like the children's games, which you've all had a hand in, they're tenants of the ag building across the street. the san francisco street artist program which is another neighbor of ours.
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you'll find in that center space between justin herman plaza and the walkway between market street and the-for-y building. michelle meany who was the original pleasing agent and designer of the concept at the ferry building who brought the farmer's market in loves the idea and been working with vendors there. who also support it. and we are trying to find someone who wants to rent or hand out or sell bachi balls. the farmer's market folks, and a whole other list of folks, the golden gateway neighbors association, we heard from jerry crowley and the neighborhood network. barbara coast neighborhood association, so between the businesses, the landlords, the hotels, the restaurants, and the neighborhood associations, we've not heard anybody who feels this is not an appropriate project. it's also important to note the supervisor david chu is also supported -- has also supported the project. the next page are some frequently asked questions that
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i think we've already heard and i'll zip through because these are the same questions that were asked by everyone i spoke with. first, we've talked about how much will this cost the city? it will cost the city nothing. i guarantee this parcel is already maintained by bost properties. they have already agreed to maintain it going forward and worked with park and rec partnerships to make sure that area down there is as nice as can be. they will also be responsible for the maintenance. this is a playing court. and in a minute, i'm going to bring -- but to maintain the courts and keep it up to its championship level. another question i get a lot of, is how do you play bachi? people are excited but don't know how to play so come back to the commission at a further meeting to put up some form of signage that will have a short list of etiquette so folks can know what they're doing.
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and figure out how to best play with their neighbors. where do you get the balls? where do you get the balls? most it's bring your own ball or byobb. -- byob. and nobody has stepped forward to be the renters or sellers of the balls. the last question which we received from a few weeks is this a private amenity? there is no gate around this. there is nobody with any kind of preferred tee times. it's self-conserve. you come and have fun and play. in closing i want to bring up bengie. that's the u.s. bocce ball championship and he's become our advisor. people think i'm a bocce ball nut and i've played six times in my life but bengie makes sure we put together these courts in a manner that can both be used from professional level all the way down to a passive once a year player.
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and so when i get down to the very end, why bocce? i like bocce because it's probably one of the most successful sports you can play. i don't care if you're 8 years old or 80, if you have great physical talents or you're just a did you ever like me, -- a duffer like me, you can have fun, the games are quick and don't take a lot of time to learn and master so it should be something that folks from around the area can come down on their lunch breaks or a coffee break and have a good time. and i want to thank you for your time. and i've spoken too long. if you have any questions, i would love to answer them. i was that thorough? wow. commissioner buell: we may get public comment and may have some questions. >> and bengie, introduce you to the group. >> hello. my name is bengie cozi. and i have been the u.s. bocce champion now since 2003 and have represented the u.s. seven times internationally. all over the world. and i'm currently the president of the aquatic park bocce club
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which is the oldest club in the nation. and when i heard about this project, i was really excited. i'm always maintaining groups of people that come down to our club and play and there's definitely i've noticed a spike in activity, especially among younger people in the city. wanting to use our courts. and there's often days where we've had to just turn people away because we didn't have much courts -- enough courts. these courts i notice they're going to be built to regulation standards. we're planning on having a portion of the national championships next year at the aquatic park bocce club. if these courts were around, we would consider -- we want -- maybe do it on these courts since it's visible to the public and more accessible. and i think there's a lot of opportunity here if these courts are built. and i just wanted to show my support for it.
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commissioner buell: who owns and operates the courts that aquatic -- at aquatic park? >> that is owned by the federal park system. i believe. and maintained by a core group of members of the club. the everyday maintenance of it. large maintenance comes from the park. commissioner buell: from an operating standpoint, are there balls available for people or do you have to belong to the club and bring your own? >> we have balls at the club that we give out to anybody. even if they're nonmembers. many times people bring their own equipment. about 50-50 i would say. commissioner buell: commissioner lee. commissioner lee: that was my question from earlier. what kind of outreach are you going to do to make the game accessible to people who don't know anything about bocce, particularly younger people, kids, are you going to provide any kind of rules of the game, how to play, any kind of
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coaching? we have lots of young kids that come to the ferry area. and walk around embarcadero and popular, very highly trafficked area. what kind of outreach are you going to do to help educate various groups that come in, may not know anything about bocce ball? >> that's a great question. i think at a future meeting, we definitely would like to come and present to you and your fellow commissioners some simple signage that will lay out in a very layman's terms how to play the game. i think it's important for folks to have a quick cheat sheet on the rules. to see how they can best play it. and i -- the great part about the laborors local 261 is they are as diverse as the city. and their membership and the folks they're outreaching to really come from all economic backgrounds. particularly from low-income
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backgrounds. and i think that we can work together with the training foundation and park and rec to figure out best way to reach out to folks and to invite them down. it's the perfect project -- i think it's a good project. will it tie every loose corner of the city together? no. but it's a great start to get this one area that is a -- the last 10 years, underused and underutilized and will enlisten the space. the one thing about bocce, everyone can play. it's something that doesn't take a lot of practice. you can come out once a year every day, and have just as much fun. so it's very accessible and we'll work with whoever you would like us to work with. and do as much outreach to make it as fun for everybody as possible. >> looking at the diagram, there is a kiosk at the very front. that kiosk at the entrance? >> that's a good question. pull back that screen. currently, there are some
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kiosks out there that are part of the j.d. deco outdoor restroom and advertising. and they're designed to sell newspapers but currently are not rented out. i know that there is the historic rail museum, and they've -- they don't want to sort of change what their focus is. they see their staff -- more than just someone there to sell historic items. so they're thinking about it. there are some folks in the food court and one market who are interested in maybe drive some of their business by handing out balls, driver's license, we will definitely, if there's interest, use some of the funds for this project to buy balls, to be tufede by the -- to be used by the public. >> and volunteer staff, people wander in and want to know what this is about and explain to them what this game is. and get them onto the court. >> sure. >> and show them how to play. >> that's a great idea.
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maybe we can host some clinics for folks to come out and learn how to do it. and one of the great things about these large buildings down there, they're all on common email for their property managers. so maybe we'll invite folks to come down with a special clinic on occasion to learn how to play. >> as you op or introduce the court -- open or introduce the court, perhaps you can set aside a few weekends for a clinic to kind of introduce this sport to the neighborhood. and have it as a free clinic for people who want to come and learn about bocce ball. and let people know there's a course here. and i guess the other question is once you have it up, how do you prevent other uses from happening? if you don't staff it? because it's an open area. >> great question. >> a big facility. what if other -- there might be other uses that are on there? >> it's like the tennis courts
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where sometimes folks want to ride their bicycles or their skate boards. and a lot of this is on the honor system in our parks. i know that -- i have sort of faith that folks will go down there and be respectful with the courts. and the good news is if you wanted to go out there and misuse them, there's not a lot of damage you can do because they're pretty simple. and our goal is to make sure if someone misuses them get them up to quality shape as fast as possible. but the idea of this space is -- people sleep on it at night. a lot of folks sleep on it during the day. the hope is that if it's a playing surface that's used on a regular basis, folks will be less likely to want to prmly camp out there. -- permanently camp out there. and there's a big chunk of grass to the south side. almost half of the space is still open. and there's nothing on that space. and we've -- on purpose tried not to put any furniture into the area, one, i think it would be a lengthier process and we can always get into a
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discussion over what's the appropriate style of benches. but this area is built with benches all the way around it. we want -- very clean and very open and not hog all the space. so a lot of the space is still open grass space. let's give it a try. and see how it goes. >> commissioner sullivan. >> i didn't realize this until i saw the slides. but my partner's architecture firm is one of the donors to this event, to -- the city attorney is advised to be on the safer side of the ethics rule if i have to be recused. commissioner buell: is there a motion to recuse commissioner sullivan? those in favor, aye, those opposed. it's unanimous. the bocce ball. >> first bocce casualty. commissioner buell: right. ok. i think we need public comment so let's proceed with that. thank you. >> we have earnestine weis.
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>> good afternoon again. as i said before, this should be equally shared with other groups. there's no such thing as an exclusive right to occupy a part of the park. this is very unfair. and selfish. because i recommended recommend budget people to play on the grass. form early they played on the grass, so why they can't -- so why can't they play on the grass the same way? i don't understand why they have to -- they say it's not used well. it is used. they can't be there 24/7 to see it. so, let's be fair. let's keep it open, because other people give -- give other peep a chance to use it. there's a crying need for soccer, for volleyball.
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now that we have a chance to have that for multiuse you're going to just rubberstamp this thing through because somebody's giving you a gift of money? that's a lovely gesture but not for this place. not for this location. that's highly discriminatory and it's not right to do that. as i said before, they played on the grass, let them play on it again. why not? and it's going to be messed up by other people, i guarantee it, because i know that area. i chased skateboarders, all kinds of people ripping up the other part of the park and i'm glad to see they're going to sense off the park pretty soon after peter pan leaves so i'll have six months of peace in that regard. but i guarantee you they're going to come there and ruin that park because president just up for grabs for people like that. and the homeless are going to stay there in the afternoon. who's going to police them? there is no such thing.
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so i urge you to let public comment on this for the neighborhood groups, phil ryan, who's head of the golden gateway tennis, that's a small group of people. they do not represent all of us. and there are thousands of tell ants in that building where i live. so please defer this until the wider public has a chance. nobody knew about this, including myself. this comes as a great shock. and i'd urge you not to ok it at this meeting, to wait and see what other people have to say about it, to be fair and not to exclusively grant them this precious piece of land that i fought so hard for over the years. thank you. president buell: thank you. >> david. >> good afternoon again. commissioners. david miles. you know, this saturday, you know, i do sunday ste

September 1, 2010 4:30am-5:00am PST

TOPIC FREQUENCY Buell 19, Bonilla 7, Us 5, Sullivan 5, The City 4, Harrison 4, U.s. 3, Boston 3, San Francisco 3, Margaret 3, Bachi 2, Kiosk 2, Justin Herman 2, Aquatic Park 2, Layman 1, Let 's Be Fair 1, Byob 1, Embarcadero 1, Earnestine Weis 1, Volleyball 1
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Duration 00:30:00
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Pixel width 528
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